February 26, 2001

M. Squash Takes Sixth at Nationals

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The men’s squash team finished sixth in the nation at the NISRA Championships, after losing to Williams College 7-2 in the fifth place matchup. The men recovered from a comprehensive 9-0 defeat at the hands of defending national champions Trinity College in the first round to edge out Western Ontario 5-4, before losing in the final round to Williams.

The NISRA Championships, which decides the year’s national intercollegiate champions, did not begin well for the men. Paired against last year’s champions and favorites Trinity in the first round, the Red had little chance of progressing. They lost all nine singles matches, winning only a single set. The best Cornell performance came from No. 1 player Rajat Khanna, who battled well in a 3-1 loss to Trinity’s No. 1 Michael Ferriera.

As the team had done on numerous occasions this year, it refused to let a lopsided defeat affect its play. In the second round matchup against Western Ontario, victories from No. 2 Tim Nagel and No. 3 Neal Soo helped to inspire the Red to a narrow 5-4 victory. Other wins came at the No. 5 (Jeff Porter), No. 6 (Darryl Chow) and the No. 7 spots (Geoff Fong).

On Sunday, defeats at the No. 1 to No. 4 spots dealt a huge blow to the team’s hopes of overcoming Williams. Victories by Porter and Tripper Heckscher restored some pride for the Red, but it wasn’t enough to secure fifth-place overall in the country.

Although the men were looking to cap a remarkable year with victory in the season finale, sixth place still represents Cornell’s best finish in over a decade. It will also give the young squad hope for next season, when it looks to improve upon this year’s performance.

The season is over for team play, but some of the men will compete in the individual national championships held this coming weekend at Harvard.

Archived article by Soo Kim